In a heartwarming moment at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday night, Brusdar Graterol was finally joined by a special fan watching from the suites - his mother, Ysmalia. Experiencing her son's magic as he threw a scoreless eighth inning, which helped the Dodgers clinch a 3-2 win against the Detroit Tigers, she couldn't have picked a better game.
“I've always dreamed of having my mom witness my pitch. This success feels more surreal with her present," expressed an emotional Graterol, post-game. “Though we faced hurdles, we remained optimistic about reuniting here in the U.S." After a heart-wrenching gap of seven years, the two met this Sunday, as she flew in from Venezuela.
Recalling the poignant reunion, Graterol shared, "The first thing she mentioned was how much I've grown. Overwhelmed, I just remember telling her she smelled like home."
Graterol's Path to Dodgers
The journey of reuniting with his mother intensified over recent weeks, following the acquisition of a crucial document that hastened the process.
Tracing Graterol's professional journey, he was first scouted and signed by the Minnesota Twins in 2014 after an impressive tryout in Venezuela. A trade in 2020 saw him donning the Dodgers' blue. Taking the mound for the eighth inning was an emotional whirlwind for Graterol.
But as his signature tunes filled the stadium, accompanied by his warm-up, he found his center. His precision was evident as he took down the Tigers with just 13 pitches. His poignant gesture, pointing to his mother post-inning, followed by a tear-concealing move with his mitt, tugged at every heartstring in the stadium.
Dave Roberts, the team’s manager, admitted, "Witnessing Brusdar and his family's moment was deeply touching. It’s easily among my top experiences. The squad rallied around this beautiful reunion." Despite missing pivotal moments in Graterol's life – his wedding, the birth of his child – Ysmalia aims to maximize her time now, staying till the postseason end.
Graterol reminisced, "My MLB debut, wedding, and the birth of my daughter – she missed them. But now, cherishing these moments with her is invaluable." On the field, the Dodgers showcased their mettle, rallying from a 2-1 deficit in the eighth inning, capped by Mookie Betts' ninth-inning heroics, marking their sixth walk-off win. While Graterol's 21 consecutive scoreless innings stand out, the night was, undeniably, all about family reunions.